Category Archives: Mastodon

Fossil Friday – mastodon palate

IMG_6506The Valley of the Mastodons exhibit has closed, and most of out mastodon remains have been moved back to the museum’s repository. But that doesn’t mean they’re forgotten, or that work on them has stopped! Continue reading

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Fossil Friday – strange mastodon vertebrae

A lot of the work done by paleontologists and biologists, especially those that work on taxonomy and systematics, is trying to identify general characteristics that various groups of animals have in common and that differ in other groups. The characters are the raw material that we use to define and identify species, to unravel the evolutionary relationships between those species and group them into higher taxa, and to identify sexes, ages, and other features. But, of course, the smallest unit we deal with is the individual animal, and sometimes fossils are emphatically, stubbornly individualistic. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – printed mastodon molar

Each September, Western Science Center holds an annual fundraiser called Science Under the Stars to raise funds for museum operations. At the end of the evening we often do a final “Special Ask” to raise dedicated funds for a particular project. This year, for the Special Ask we requested funds for a 3D-scanning, photogrammetry, and printing lab. Our donors, led by the Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians, came through in spectacular fashion. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon vertebra revisited

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After a highly successful Science Under the Stars fundraiser, I’ve tried to get back into the lab to catch up on neglected science work. Administrative duties are still conspiring to keep me chained to the phone and computer, but I have made some progress. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon vertebrae


Even though the Valley of the Mastodons exhibit is now open, it doesn’t mean that our mastodon work has moved to the backburner. On the contrary, we’re now doing more mastodon work than ever before! Continue reading

Valley of the Mastodons

VOMLogo2I missed doing a Fossil Friday post last week. But my reason was a good one: that was the opening day for our new exhibit, Valley of the Mastodons! Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon tusks

IMG_5348In three days scientists start arriving in Hemet for the Valley of the Mastodons symposium, and we’re one week from the opening of the associated Valley of the Mastodons exhibit. As a result, I’m a little swamped, and today’s Fossil Friday post will have to be brief. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon jaw fragment

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As we build up to our new exhibit opening, I’ll continue the Month of Mastodons with a partial lower jaw. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon partial skull

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Our latest mastodon installment as we approach the “Valley of the Mastodons” exhibit opening 3 weeks from now is “Braces”, a partial mastodon skull from the San Diego Canal. Continue reading

Fossil Friday – mastodon calcaneum

IMG_5289Continuing with our mastodon spree in preparation for next month’s “Valley of the Mastodons” workshop and exhibit, this week for Fossil Friday we have a mastodon calcaneum. Continue reading